Regional fisheries management organizations (RFMOs) need to know who is on the water in order to properly and responsibly manage a tuna fishery. While each RFMO has a list of authorized vessels, the rules for registry and information required change from region to region. Adding to the confusion, many vessels are registered with more than one RFMO regardless of where they are currently fishing.
A global registry and set of standards could help solve the problem. ISSF is advocating for the creation of such a list and is taking direct action to help jump-start the stalled process.
A Conservation Measure passed by the ISSF Board of Directors gives vessels of a size subject to RFMO registry one year to obtain a unique vessel identifier (UVI) through the IHS-Fairplay administered International Maritime Organization (IMO) numbering system. The measure calls on ISSF participating companies to refrain from transactions with those vessels that fail to secure a number by May 31, 2011.
The goal is transparent and harmonized monitoring, control and surveillance (MCS) measures adopted and implemented by RFMOs that improve compliance and provide assurance to customers all along the supply chain that the tuna purchased was caught legally and managed sustainably.
ISSF plans to accomplish this by: